Hi everybody, MrEnergyCzar here. This is my two year review of the Chevy Volt.
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• Here are some things you might not know about your Volt. If you want greater electric range, start the Volt 15 minutes before you leave with the accessories off and the car still plugged in. This will charge the battery to the maximum right before you leave.
• The top speed of the Volt is 101 mph not 100. If the key fob dies there's a secret hole in this front storage compartment. Put the key in and you'll be able to start the car by pressing the blue button.
• Let's get right to the numbers. My lifetime MPG is now 235 MPG. In two years I've used 116.8 gallons or about $500 worth of gas to drive 27,490 miles. That comes to about 5 gallons a month.
• I drove in pure electric mode about 85% of the time or for about 24,000 electric miles. This means I used a total of about 7,300 KWH of electricity. If I wasn't able to use the free surplus solar my home produces and the free charger at work, I would of had to pay about $30 a month for electricity.
• For me, the fuel cost is the gas which is about $20 per month. This means it costs just under 2 cents per mile or about 56 miles per dollar. For comparison, the Prius gets about 13 miles per dollar and an SUV gets about 5.
• One of the myths of the Volt is that the battery doesn't last that long and you have to replace it. I still get about 40 miles electric range most of the year. After about 9 years, you should expect your EV range to drop to 27 to 34 miles.
• Another myth is that it costs a lot to maintain the Volt. My total two year cost to maintain the Volt was $77. At 13 months I got my tires aligned and at 23 months I got my first oil change. After 2 years my engine is barely broken in because it's only run about 5,000 miles.
• The average Volt driver drives in pure electric mode most of the time. Of course there's no range anxiety because the gas generator comes on after roughly 40 miles of electric driving.
• I can power my full size fridge and pellet stove with my Volt when the power goes out. I installed this great EVExtend wiring kit to the 12v battery which allows me to attach a pure sine wave inverter with a 2,000 watt surge. It's a quick connect system. When the power goes out you bring the inverter and this in here and you just connect these two together and when you're done you pull them apart. When using it you want to have the Volt outside, powered on, with the accessories off so the 12 volt battery will get back charged. The Volt's gas generator will run about 6 minutes each hour and you'll use about 2-3 gallons of gas per day.
• No Volts have ever caught fire in the wild. I'm willing to bet that when one does catch fire, it'll be from the gas in the 9 gallon tank, not the battery. The Volt naysayers seemed to have disappeared during the past year. Once in awhile you'll get a straggler yelling about how his taxes paid for my Volt. I just tell them that my taxes pay for their child tax credit and they usually walk away with their head down.
• Put the jumper cables up here in the front of the car even though the 12 volt accessory battery is in the back. To jump start someone else attach the jumper cables here to the 12 volt battery.
• I think there needs to be better Volt commercials. Many people are still confused about the Volt. The number one question I get is still, "What happens when the battery depletes?".
• People still complain that the Volt is powered by out domestically produced electricity which is of course coal, natural gas, nuclear and renewables. It amazes me how political ideology can convince someone that an American made American powered car is a bad thing. They'd rather we get our fuel for our cars from corrupt oil regions of the world that want to harm us.
• A great Volt resource is the community over at GM-Volt.com.
Check out the Volt community at http://gm-volt.com/
The EVExtend Volt inverter kits can be found here: http://www.evextend.com/Eme...
Produced by: Dustin Salmons http://www.CDSalmons.com